Feld Entertainment makes employees happy with Airbnb for Work
Feld Entertainment has been in the business of bringing smiles to people’s faces since 1967, and that doesn’t just include the families who enjoy their popular shows, including Monster Jam, Disney On Ice, Marvel Universe Live! and the new, interactive DreamWorks Trolls the Experience. It also includes Feld’s 3,000+ employees who travel for work.
Many Feld employees are on the road up to nine months a year. So, it’s no surprise that they’re looking for places to stay that help them feel grounded and remind them of home.
In 2016, the company saw a growing number of expense reports requesting reimbursement for stays with Airbnb. Feld prides itself on being responsive to its employees, especially those working on productions in far-flung locations, so they were allowing these stays. But their travel managers weren’t getting the same level of visibility, control, and robust support they had with existing travel-booking platforms.
Having heard good things about Airbnb for Work at travel conferences and local chapter events, the Feld travel team decided to add it to their travel program.
Airbnb for Work has everything the Feld team needs. Its dashboard offers visibility into employee accommodations, and Feld’s travel managers can choose to display potential bookings with highly-rated hosts, which can lead to a more successful and enjoyable trip.
“The fact that it’s a global program—since we’re a global company—is very beneficial as well,” says Christine Zajda, Feld’s Director of Procurement, Sourcing, and Travel.
Integrating Airbnb for Work with their Concur travel-management software and Rocketrip, its employee budgeting tool, Feld gave their employees the ability to access and manage the work travel accommodations all in one place. Now, employees are booking the accommodations they want. And their smiles are even bigger as the company encourages them to book on Airbnb by giving them a budget and letting them share in the savings when they don’t spend it all.
But it’s about so much more than just ease and money. It’s about enjoying their stays on the road, say Feld employees, including members of their Track Construction Team for Monster Jam and Supercross. Five members of the team travel to Las Vegas for month-long stays twice a year. They’re now able to book a house to stay in together. “It’s definitely improved their quality of life when they’re out there working long hours,” Zajda says. “Having the ability to stay in a home environment has really been appreciated [by the team].”
We appreciate Airbnb for Work so much that we’re going to have a contest where employees try to find the coolest listings. The idea is to help traveling teams bond by staying in spectacular homes together, instead of checking into separate hotel rooms, and to save money by encouraging Airbnb for Work listings.
Feld leaders are smiling too knowing that their spending boosts the local economies where the company is staging productions. This is important, they say, when you’re the kind of company that gives employees time off to volunteer in the community each month.
Meanwhile, the company’s bottom line is getting a big boost. “In the first three quarters of 2018, our average daily rate for Airbnb lodgings was just $59, compared to an ADR of $156 for hotels,” Zajda says.